Silver Pavilion and Philosopher's Walk in Kyoto

Sakyo-ku Travel Blog

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near the Silver Pavilion

It was already late afternoon, but we decided to head over to Ginkaku-ji, the Silver Pavilion. We took a cab there with the plan to walk back along the Philosopher’s Walk.

The Silver Pavilion was originally a mountain retreat for shogun Yoshimasa who intended to cover the building in silver leaf as a tribute to his grandfather, who covered Kinkaku-ji in gold leaf. The Silver Pavilion never received its silver leaf finish, but the name stuck. We walked around the Ginshaden sand layout and along the path that wound through the gardens. I really enjoyed this temple. The temple sat peacefully along a rock-lined pond. The path through the mossy forest followed the pond, around a bamboo forest, along a stream and up a hill with great views. It was so relaxing that I could picture myself as shogun wandering these paths.

Ginshaden sand layout
I felt a little rushed here, as we didn’t have much time and everyone was rushing through. We were almost pushed along the path from people behind us.

After the temple, we stopped for some ice cream before heading down the Philosopher’s Walk. The cherry blossoms were gorgeous. We hit them right at the peak. The Philosopher’s Walk is a little trail along a cherry blossom lined canal. Part of the trail was closed for restoration, so we walked in the street next to the canal. It was very peaceful and relaxing and seemed to be downhill the whole way. The path followed close to the edge of the canal and it could be easy to fall in the canal (and hard to get out). We followed the canal and crossed over to the Otoyo Shrine, one of the few Shinto shrines in the city. We continued our walk back to the hotel in the dark. We stopped in our rooms for a short rest before heading out to one of the temples that were open late and lit up for night-time cherry blossom viewing.

 

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near the Silver Pavilion
near the Silver Pavilion
Ginshaden sand layout
Ginshaden sand layout
the Silver Pavilion
the Silver Pavilion
ponds, rocks, trees at Silver Pavi…
ponds, rocks, trees at Silver Pav…
cherry tree at Silver Pavilion
cherry tree at Silver Pavilion
Silver Pavilion and sand sculpture
Silver Pavilion and sand sculpture
Silver Pavilion on pond
Silver Pavilion on pond
bamboo fence to keep out the bambo…
bamboo fence to keep out the bamb…
sightseeing in heels
sightseeing in heels
close up of flowers
close up of flowers
view of Silver Pavilion grounds
view of Silver Pavilion grounds
mossy and stream
mossy and stream
mmm...bottled sweat
mmm...bottled sweat
cherry blossoms over canal
cherry blossoms over canal
close up of cherry blossoms
close up of cherry blossoms
two girls in traditional dress get…
two girls in traditional dress ge…
my ice cream must have said someth…
my ice cream must have said somet…
cherry blossoms along canal - Phil…
cherry blossoms along canal - Phi…
pink cherry blossoms
pink cherry blossoms
low hanging blossoms
low hanging blossoms
cherry blossom ball
cherry blossom ball
sakura lined Philosophers Walk
sakura lined Philosopher's Walk
Big cheery tree
Big cheery tree
stones of lost children
stones of lost children
flowery canal
flowery canal
taking photos of cherry blossoms
taking photos of cherry blossoms
woman preparing to enter Otoyo Shr…
woman preparing to enter Otoyo Sh…
Otoyo shrine
Otoyo shrine
me with my aunt and uncle
me with my aunt and uncle
Linda and cherry blossoms
Linda and cherry blossoms
me and cherry blossoms
me and cherry blossoms
mouse at Otoyo Shrine
mouse at Otoyo Shrine
sunset from Otoyo Shrine Torii Gate
sunset from Otoyo Shrine Torii Gate
Sakyo-ku
photo by: alyssa_ob